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Poster: jerlouvis Date: Aug 11, 2011 2:46pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

I was referring to earlier in the history when the band was still good for the most part,it just seems to me to be a fun GD song in the same vein as Ramble On Rose or Brown Eyed Women,as for not being profound,it's the GD,I think that goes without saying.

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Poster: elbow1126 Date: Aug 11, 2011 4:13pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

I never thought of Brown Eyed Women as a fun song. I always lumped it with Jack Straw as telling a not so nice story of americana from the Great Depression era. I do lump Jed and ROR together as fun songs and often wondered why only one gets dumped on.

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Poster: ringolevio Date: Aug 11, 2011 7:03pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

well, just 'cus Ramble on Rose is better, I guess ...

Tennessee Jed is not the most profound song in the world, but definitely everyone (most everyone) wants to hear it! That's the thing. I think they just always played it because it was so enjoyable. You can always tell Jerry is having fun. That's my highly uninformed two cents, anyway ...

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Aug 11, 2011 9:12pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

Harvested from the same patch, maybe, but very different crops ... Rose is a rose, BEW is maybe sweet potatoes or collards or something very Southern and nostalgic, and Tennessee Jed is definitely corn. I think it's meant to be; c'mon, it's GD on Hee-Haw. I think they're having some over-the-top fun. That's quite different from BEW and RoR, which have real sweetness and an almost epic quality along with their folksiness. I definitely prefer them -- although Tennessee Jed has a dog. Or rather, a dawg. That counts for a lot.

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Poster: elbow1126 Date: Aug 12, 2011 10:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

Jed was not inspired by Hee Haw, it was by red wine and the twangy sound of a jaw harp (aka jew's harp) in the very un-Hee Haw town of Barcelona!


"'Tennessee Jed' originated in Barcelona, Spain. Topped up on vino tinto, I composed it aloud to the sound of a jaw harp twanged between echoing building faces by someone strolling half a block ahead of me in the late summer twilight."

Go figure.

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Poster: ringolevio Date: Aug 12, 2011 4:37am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

Exactly! Only I can't see BEW as Southern exactly, with the reference to Bigfoot County, and the roof caving in from snow ...

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Aug 12, 2011 6:40am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

Um, West Virginia? It snows there. Or maybe the roof caved in cuz they weren't actually expecting snow! There's actually no Bigfoot County anywhere, but it's gotta be somewhere with hickory, so ... not southern Montana, cuz hickory only grows in the east (or, I guess, up to Texas and Minnesota). But I say if Daddy made whiskey well, he was a West Virginian.

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Poster: ringolevio Date: Aug 12, 2011 7:08am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

I suppose you're right; I always assumed it was somewhere out west.

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Aug 12, 2011 8:24am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

We could split the difference and make it the Ozarks. That's got the Western flavor as well as the southern thing going ... True Grit starts in Arkansas, and so do parts of Lonesome Dove ... so Arkansas would work. Provided that it snows.

Incidentally, a great Tennessee Jed: 10/29/73. (Also great Mexicali.) Had it on while making dinner and even the dogs were into it. OK, maybe they were more into the burgers, but they seemed attentive.

This post was modified by AltheaRose on 2011-08-12 15:24:32

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Poster: William Tell Date: Aug 12, 2011 11:58am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: BEW

We had this exact discussion some yrs ago...you can search on it and find out what we decided back then if you have a hankering, as the singer of these tunes would say (BEW, TJ, R0R, etc). Here's a trivial amt of info on it:

http://artsites.ucsc.edu/GDead/agdl/brown.html

Those of us from No Cal always took it literally to mean a Co in N Cal, where bigfoots grow...as the ltr writer to Dodds did, of course. But, clearly, the ref's to prohibition, wall street, and stills allude to the SE US, right?

So, I take it as classic Hunter in mixing E & W, Americana, to come up with a great tune in the spirit of the 1970-1971 song writing phase that gave us so many of his great songs.

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Poster: snori Date: Aug 12, 2011 12:06pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: BEW

It really is superbly evocative writing, the opening line just fixes you in the time and place.

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Poster: ringolevio Date: Aug 12, 2011 10:43am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

That would explain why I like it, then, 'cus my parents were both from the Ozarks.

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Poster: elbow1126 Date: Aug 12, 2011 10:22am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

That might work. This from dead.net:

Robert Hunter has added some additional verses in solo performances - the following from 2 November 1998 (hard to decipher):

[?] my older brother, his name was Ben
My sister died at the age of ten
We followed up to the burying ground
Was the first time Daddy's tears hit the ground

First came school, and then came the law
[...] and the wall [...]
But I grew up just a little too slow
I moved over into Arkansas

When I went back it was twenty years' later
[?]
[?]
Tears were falling at the place again

[I think the next bit is a fragment from a different song]
My moma they were gone [...], lay down, lay down
[...] in her arms, saying baby, babe lay down
Lay down
Lay down
And I see your slumber [...]

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Poster: duckpond74 Date: Aug 11, 2011 3:09pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Tennessee Jed

"it just seems to me to be a fun GD song in the same vein as Ramble On Rose or Brown Eyed Women" - exactly! It was harvested from the same patch that gave us those songs and more. I actually consider it one of their 'americana' classics . . . typical Grateful Dead - it makes sense for some, but not everyone gets it just the same.

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